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South Africa waiting on IOC before making Tokyo Olympics decision

Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images

The South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc) will not be making any sudden decisions about sending athletes to the Tokyo Olympics, and will wait on further instructions from the IOC.

With Japan one of the red zones for the coronavirus outbreak, and the Games set for late July this year, Canada and Australia have said they would not send athletes to Tokyo if the Games went ahead as scheduled.

Sascoc CEO Ravi Govender and acting president Barry Hendricks both stated on Monday that the International Olympic Committee's decision would be their guiding line, as nations await a final decision in the face of the pandemic.

Read: SA Olympic champ Van der Burgh has coronavirus

Govender told The Sowetan that Sascoc would give the IOC the four weeks they've asked for in which to make a decision: "The first position we have as Sascoc is regarded to the IOC.

"We have had contacts with them and our position is that they have asked for a four-week period for them to do their own scenario.

"We've agreed to give them that period, let them do all the analyses they want to do and come back to us with their position.

"It's either we agree with that position or disagree with it.

"But until we know what their position is, we are going to give them that opportunity to come back to us."

Hencricks, who has been acting president of Sascoc since 2019, added per IOL Sport: "We had a meeting with the IOC last week and they have advised us that they will make a decision on the Tokyo Olympics soon.

"We are waiting on them before we make any kind of decision or announcement on our stance as Sascoc."

Meanwhile, the UK have also expressed reservations about Tokyo going ahead as is, while the US have polled their athletes and 7 out of 10 would like the Games to be postponed.